By Chinmayi S K and Rohini Lakshané
We are publishing this design document to serve as a guideline for conducting an interactive event or a workshop to understand and document how intentional Internet shutdowns affect the lives of women, especially those living in sensitive geographies. It takes into account the best practices and principles of organising feminist meetings and is especially focussed on researching questions about women’s access to the Internet.
We first conceptualised and used this design for a two-day interactive and exploratory workshop held in 2017 in Manipur, India in partnership with the Integrated Rural Development Service Organisation (IRDSO). The workshop was a part of a pilot project to research the effects of unreliable mobile networks and intentional Internet shutdowns on the lives and livelihoods of women in Manipur. 16 women activists, NGO workers, and entrepreneurs from Manipur participated in it. A report entitled “Of Sieges and Shutdowns” comprising the findings from this workshop and subsequent research activities was released at RightsCon 2018 in Toronto, Canada.
The event in this document has been envisaged for interacting with activists and organisations functioning in different areas of empowerment of women: human rights; relief for victims of domestic abuse; economic independence; access to education; increasing the participation of women in governance; and so on. This methodology can be used to investigate these questions:
- What are their patterns of Internet usage?
- How have intentional Internet shutdowns impacted their lives?
We are releasing this document under a CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 International license so that other feminist groups conducting research and advocacy on related topics could adopt this design into their pursuits. Feedback, suggestions and comments that could help us enrich this design for future use are welcome and much appreciated. If you would like our help in applying this design to the context of your research or advocacy, please email us: theteam [at] thebachchaoproject [dot] org